Edgar Berlanga Jr is used to his foes withering before him in less than 3 minutes. Demond Nicholson simply refused to lay down and go away.
A long fight was counted out by most of the experts who predicted that Berlanga’s 1st round KO’s streak would go from 16 straight to 17. They cited Berlanga’s power (and promoted it to near-mythic status) and that Nicholson had been stopped and dropped before in fights. Those betting on a first-round stoppage were sorely disappointed.
Nicholson was not dropped until the 2nd round, but got up quickly and got right back into the fight. In a small ring (only 18 feet of canvas), Nicholson maintained mobile and frustrate Berlanga and prevented him from landing enough sustained offense to create the fight-ending impact that many expected.
To his credit, Nicholson was able to land some offense of his own. He took a round off of Berlanga late as the young lion seemed to be losing some gas. He found a home for his punches all night but Berlanga was able to land more consistently and more powerfully throughout the fight.
Nicholson found the canvas in rounds 3, 5, and round 8 shortly before the final bell. He lost a unanimous decision 79-68, 79-69, and 79-69 but did most of what he promised. He gave Berlanga a fight, took him to the deep waters and dark places. He didn’t win the fight but he showed well for himself and now has a variety of other vets eager to try their hands at Berlanga.
In the aftermath of the fight, the young undefeated fighter has been linked to three fighters, two of which have Philadelphia roots. Always eager for a challenging fight, Philadelphia warrior “King” Gabriel Rosado took to Instagram with a fight poster of sorts ready to go. It would be an entertaining bout, as Rosado is ready to throw down with anyone. The other Philly opponent whose name was bandied about was Jesse Hart. He’s been without a fight date, and a fight with Berlanga would fit his style and be an interesting matchup for both considering they have Nicholson wins on their resume, but Hart scored the stoppage.
Finally, Steven Nelson is calling out Berlanga. He’s a late-rising name at 168 and both fighters are at home under the Top Rank label. It would be a fight that probably has the easiest chance of being made.
No matter what is next for Berlanga, you can bet his opponent will be borrowing heavily from the performance of Demond Nicholson.
Photo Credit To Mikey Williams/Top Rank via Getty Images
Video credit to Fighting Spirit on YouTube